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70th Hanging of the Green Coming December 1

November 28, 2007

A classic children's opera will be featured at one of Oklahoma Baptist University's longest running traditions.

OBU's 70th annual Hanging of the Green ceremony will be Saturday, Dec. 1, at 7:30 p.m. in Raley Chapel's Potter Auditorium.

This year's Hanging of the Green will feature Amahl and the Night Visitors. The opera was written in 1951 when the National Broadcasting Company commissioned Gian-Carlo Menotti to write a children's Christmas opera to be broadcast live on television.

"Menotti grew up in Italy where, rather than waiting for Santa Claus on Christmas Eve, children wait for the 'three kings' to deliver gifts," said Rhetta Hudson, OBU associate professor of music, who will be directing Amahl and the Night Visitors. "Many years later Menotti was reminded of the Italian tradition of the 'three kings' while viewing the painting of Adoration of the King by Hieronymous Bosch at the Metropolitan Museum. This inspired him to write Amahl and the Night Visitors."

Performing as the main characters are Kathryn Anderson, a senior from Harrah, Okla.; Norma Partridge, OBU associate professor of music; Eric Gay, a 1994 OBU graduate; Dr. Mark McQuade, OBU assistant professor of music; Dr. Paul Hammond, dean of OBU's Warren M. Angell College of Fine Arts; and Aaron Foshee, a junior from Jones, Okla.

Also performing in the 2007 Hanging of the Green will be the OBU-Shawnee Community Orchestra, the Bison Glee Club, the Bisonettes, OBU Chapel Choir and University Chorale. The University Ringers and a recorder consort will provide pre-service music in the foyer of the auditorium.

OBU's first Hanging of the Green ceremony was featured in WMU Memorial Dormitory. After the singing of carols, representatives from all dormitories lit candles of good will from the candle there and carried the light to their own buildings.

The custom of Hanging of the Green has continued through the years. It moved in 1945 to the newly completed Brittain Hall, in 1957 to the University Auditorium, and in 1961 to Raley Chapel.

For more information, contact the OBU Division of Music at 405-878-2305 or